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fright, became black as a negro, from head to foot in a few hours. The same cause whitened the hair on half the head of a patient in the Pennsylvania Hospital, and on the whole head of Marie Antoinette, wife of Louis XVI., in a single night.
A correspondent of the London Medical Times, writing from India, February 19, 1858, says that a Sepoy of the Bengal army, having been made a prisoner, was brought before the authorities for examination. The man trembled violently; intense horror and despair were depicted on his face, and he seemed to be almost stupified with fear. The writer, who was present, adds, that within the space of half an hour his hair became gray on every portion of his head. 66 When first seen by us, it was the glossy jet-black of the Bengalee; his age was twenty-four. The attention of the bystanders was first attracted by the Sergeant, whose prisoner he was, exclaiming, ‘he is turning gray! and I, with several other persons, watched its progress. Gradually, but decidedly, the change went on, and a uniform gray
colour was completed within the period above named.”
A few years ago two young men attempted to rob an eagle's nest, high up on a cliff on the bank of the Hudson river, but several feet below the summit. One of them was let down in a basket, suspended by a rope, till he came opposite the nest. The eagle returned to protect her young, and in endeavouring to defend himself against her talons, the young man drew his knife, and in the contest accidentally cut all the strands of the rope but one. Meantime his companion was drawing him up to the summit, but he was so affected by fear at his perilous condition, that the next day his hair became as hoary as that of an old man.
The following case may be adduced, not merely for the illustration of our subject, but for the wholesome warning that it suggests against the vice of which it is a monitory register. A young man, twenty-three years old, came from the mines to San Francisco, with the intention of soon leaving the latter place for home. On the evening
On the evening of his arrival, he,
with his companions, visited the gambling saloons. After watching for a time the varied fortunes of a table, supposed to be undergoing the process of “tapping," from the continued success of those betting against the bank, the excitement overcame his better judgment, and he threw upon the “seven-spot” of a new deal, a bag which he said contained eleven hundred dollars—his all—the result of two years' privation and hard labour-exclaiming, with a voice trembling from intense excitement, “My home, or the mines!" As the dealer slowly resumed the drawing of his cards, his countenance, livid with fear of the inevitable fate that seems ever attendant upon the tapping process when once commenced, the writer, who was present, says: “I turned my eyes upon the young man who had staked his whole gains upon a card. Never shall I forget the impression made by his look of intense anxiety as he watched the cards as they fell from the dealer's hands. All the energies of his system seemed concentrated in the fixed gaze of his eyes, while the deadly pallor of his face bespoke the subdued action of his heart. All around seemed infected with the sympathetic powers of the spell; even the hitherto successful winners forgot their own stakes in the hazardous chance placed upon the issue of the bet. The cards are slowly told with the precision of high-wrought excitement. The seven-spot wins—the spell is broken-reaction takes place. The winner exclaims, with a deep-drawn sigh, ‘I will never gamble again!' and was carried from the room in a deep swoon, from which he did not fully recover until the next morning; and then to know that the equivalent surrendered for his gain was the colour of his hair, now changed to a perfect white!” Not less sudden, nor less calamitous often, are the effects of
GRIEF. Father Chrysostom describes it as “a cruel torture of the soul, consuming the body, and gnawing the very heart.” Melancthon says, “it strikes the heart, makes it flutter and pine away in great pain.” It was believed that Philip V. of Spain died suddenly by the breaking of his heart on hearing of the hopeless defeat of his army near Plaisance. Dr. Zimmerman states, that on opening the king's body the heart was found actually burst; so that, as Johnson says, the vulgar metaphorical expression of a “broken heart," is sometimes pathologically correct. What amazing results have followed a sudden paroxysm of
Joy. A woman in the city of New York heard that her husband and child were on board a ship that had been wrecked. Accustomed to go to the wharf from day to day, as if desirous of being nearer the beloved objects that were supposed to be buried beneath the sea, she suddenly beheld them landing from a vessel that had picked them up. The joy on seeing them safe was overwhelming. After the first salutation her reason fled, and from that time to the present she has not known them. She still sits on what she thinks the same rock where she used to bewail their fate, wringing her hands with ineffable distress; while every
week the husband and son visit her, hoping to find a gleam of returning memory, but in vain.
Sophocles, Chilo, Juventius, Talma, and Fouquet, are said to have died from the ex